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Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Impulse Control Disorders

by Stephen O. Watters
Vine Books, 2001
Review by Christian Perring, Ph.D. on Mar 8th 2003

Real Solutions for Overcoming Internet Addictions

This slim book is aimed at Christians who find themselves spending too much time on the Internet or engaging in immoral activities on the Internet and yet who are not able to resist the temptation.  It has chapters describing people's problems with money compulsions, games, relationships, and porn, and the second half of the book discusses ways to stop engaging in these forms of self-destructive behavior.  The writing style is clear and accessible, and the book is full of real-life examples of people's problems, so it will be easy for readers to relate their own problems to those of others.  The book is peppered with quotations from the Bible about human failings.

The author suggests that there are 5 elements in overcoming Internet addictions:

·          Assessing the problem and being willing to change.

·          A community of support.

·          Immediate and ongoing action to change harmful behavior.

·          Understanding and addressing underlying thoughts and emotions.

·          A restored relationship with God.

Watters goes on to describe how to proceed with these five ways of dealing with the problem.  Unfortunately, he gives little detail and the advice is not backed up with any evidence that it is likely to be effective.  Obviously non-Christians and even many Christians may find that the religious tone of the book is off-putting.  Readers would probably be better off using other books on this topic, such as Caught in the Net or In the Shadows of the Net.


© 2003 Christian Perring. All rights reserved.

Christian Perring, Ph.D., is Chair of the Philosophy Department at Dowling College, Long Island, and editor of Metapsychology Online Review. His main research is on philosophical issues in medicine, psychiatry and psychology.